New Delhi, November 18: A father-son duo were detained by authorities in Saudi Arabia for posing with the Indian flag inside the Haram in Mecca -- considered the most holiest place on earth by Muslims. They were released after the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) intervened in the case through the Consulate General in Jeddah.
Imtiaz Ali, aged 45, and his 12-year-old son Uzair Ali are both residents of Vadodara in Gujarat. Imtiaz, along with his wife and two children, had left for Saudi Arabia on a pilgrimage. Hyderabadi Woman Rescued from Riyadh in Saudi Arabia, Thanks Sushma Swaraj.
Unaware that posing with any flag inside the Haram is prohibited, the father-son duo attempted to click pictures of them with the tricolour. They were spotted by the guards deployed at the sanctum sanctorum, who took them into custody.
While Uzair was released hours after being detained, Imtiaz was freed on Saturday after the Consulate General in Jeddah intervened.
Yes, We r aware of d incident. The incident has happened inside d Haram in Makkah. Pl note that it is banned 2 display Flags in Haram area. Our official has already met Mr.Imtiaz Ali n son Mr Uzair Ali at Haram Police Station.After our intervention, Uzair Ali has been released./1
— India in Jeddah (@CGIJeddah) November 17, 2018
Before their release, Zuber Goplani, National Executive Council member of the All India Muslim Majlis-e- Mushawrat’s Gujarat Chapter, had tweeted to the Gujarat CMO, PMO and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, seeking immediate help for the family.
The Consulate General in Jeddah has appealed the Indian nationals planning to visit Saudi Arabia to ensure that the code of conduct in Haram is not violated. "Please note it is banned to display flags in Haram area," it said.